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Why You Failed to Keep Your New Year's Resolution

Ken Chen

Ken Chen

January 31, 2018

Truth be told, I was going to blog about this topic the first week of January. But life and work swept me away and it’s now four weeks later!

If you are like most people, keeping your New Year’s Resolution is a very hard thing to do. Twenty-five percent of resolutions don’t make it past one week, and only 10% are fully kept. If I kept records for myself, the percentage would be about the same.

How to Keep Your Resolutions

Don’t lose hope though! I read this New York Times article and it got me thinking about how I can use these insights to help me keep my resolutions. It’s far more likely that what leads to success are strong social bonds — relationships that encourage people to cooperate and lend support to one another.

The article talks about how positive social emotions like gratitude and compassion are the key. People who feel gratitude and compassion for their clients, partners, and colleagues are more likely to sacrifice short-term needs for long-term goals, therefore keep their resolutions or promises. Now, that might sound like a hard thing to do, but in the end, it’s about being fair, honest, generous and loyal to whomever you do business with.

The reason I like this is the simplicity of it. You can set an ambitious New Year’s Resolution, but to maximize your chances of keeping it, being a good person or consultant every day is the key.

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